Tasted in Chablis with Valérie Beaufumé, 29 January 2021.
Valérie on 2020:
“2020 was super – a warm summer, and I’ve never seen flowers in May before – and the flowering was over so quickly – such an early vintage. In 2020 the type of rootstock made a big difference, the SO4 did okay, some others less so. The deeper soils also had, possibly, a better reserve of water – I didn’t see any blockage of maturity. We didn’t have high degrees in 2020 – a maximum of 12°, they were a bit lower than in 2019. Good acidity and lovely freshness. In 19 we started in the night finishing at midday because it was particularly hot – that wasn’t needed in 2020 – we didn’t have any particularly long fermentations in 19 and they were particularly fast in 2020.”
Valérie on 2019:
“We had some small touches of frost but not much, lots of millerandes due to a cold flowering. At least it was a very clean year in the vines, but still so much less volume in 2019 but to help was the VCI from the 2018 vintage. 100mm of rain but over three months in the summer – the rain was really nothing. 2019 a vintage where we changed a little how we harvest – we started 13-14 September – and it was very hot, so we started to harvest about 4am and be finished before lunchtime – so the juice wasn’t so warm. I thought that maybe the juice was a little fragile but the fermentations were rapid and I didn’t need to increase my SO2 – all was done so quickly – much more so than in 2018. I think that the wines have good concentration – no surprise given the dry summer. One or two cuvées I chose to correct the acidity where I’d waited a little longer for maturity – if I couldn’t find a good compromise I didn’t hesitate to correct – 20g per hectoliter isn’t a lot. I think it’s a good vintage with some richness – some cuvées seem a little more exotic fruited than others. I think the wines might keep longer than some of the 18s as I think there’s a better structure.”
I always find a certain sophistication to the wines here, particularly this is visible in 2019. Texturally lovely and with fine purity. Picture-perfect (excellent) Chablis
DIAM-style seals. Contrasting the first bottlings of the domaine’s cuvée with those waiting for the second mise(bottling):
2019 Petit Chablis
From Chemin de Chablis just out of the village in front of the domaine. This direct from the tank for a later bottling.
A fine, precise nose of attractive citrus – it tastes great after the morning coffee – bright and fresh – wide, mouth-watering, no austerity, then opening out wide, slightly floral and lingering beautifully.
2019 Petit Chablis
This the currently bottled version.
Plenty of yellow colour. The nose has more depth and less precision – it’s rounder and less focused – still with a pretty citrus. But bright and mouth-watering, an incisive start – the finish showing even more impressively than the first though – with more weight and mineral length – that’s clearly not the same but very tasty wine…
From Les Crais on the plateau of Lignorelles here. Again from the tank to start
Like the PC from tank this is fine and fresh – really attractive. There’s more gas here but clearly a more mineral style too, flavour that expands in mouth-watering style over the palate, slightly chalky finishing. That’s really excellent.
This bottled in July
A deeper nose again, no reduction visible this time. Bright, wide, certainly incisive – but perfectly textured and without austerity. Extra finishing depth and concentration in the last flavours almost a later steely right at the end. Excellent wine.